Greg Cunningham's season is over after he fractured his leg in Preston North End's 3-1 loss to Norwich at Deepdale.

It ended the Lilywhites' faint hopes of making the play-offs but of deeper concern was a bad injury to the Galway man, who has been knocking on the door for Republic of Ireland in recent months.

The 26-year-old made his international debut against Algeria back in 2010  but broke his leg while on loan at Leicester City from Manchester City a year later, an injury which stalled his progress.

It was a thoroughly miserable day for Preston manager Simon Grayson, who also lost Tom Clarke (ruptured Achilles) to a season-ending injury.

Cunningham actually tried to play on after suffering the fracture, and Grayson backed his player to get back within six weeks.

"Greg’s got a fracture to his leg which means he’ll be out for the rest of the season, but hopefully he’ll be back for pre-season," he told the club's website.

"He’s a top a lad and tried to carry on. A brave, brave player, one of the best players that I've signed at this football club and it’s unfortunate that this incident has happened.

"Obviously it’s serious, but it’s not too serious that it’s going to rule him out for months and months. I think it’s a six-week turnaround which will have him ready for the pre-season, so we’ll get him sorted and see him in pre-season." 

Ireland will play Mexico in New Jersey on 1 June in a summer friendly, ten days before the World Cup qualifier against Austria at the Aviva Stadium.

Sandwiched in between those games is a Dublin friendly with Uruguay on 4 June.